Mental Health Resources for First Responders

Volunteer first responders' mental health may suffer due to traumatic events they are exposed to.June is PTSD Awareness Month, and first responders may experience post-traumatic stress due to the traumatic events they are exposed to on the job. Use this opportunity to familiarize yourself and your department members of the signs and symptoms to watch for and the resources that are available if someone needs help. The NVFC offers the following:

Webinar: Moral Injury – Peeling Back the Layers of PTSD – Register for this webinar, taking place June 11 and sponsored by ESO, to learn how moral distress and survivor guilt impact the mental well-being of first responders as well as strategies to overcome these challenges.

Video: Emergency Responder Behavioral Health – Understand the Risks and Know the Signs – This video highlights warning signs to watch for.

Course: Addressing Substance Abuse, PTSD, and Other Concerns in the Fire Service – This course in the NVFC Virtual Classroom examines PTSD and types of substance abuse frequently seen in the fire service, how PTSD can relate to substance abuse, and how to get help through the NVFC’s Share the Load Program.

Article: I’m Not Fine and Neither Are You – Mental Health and The Fire Service – This article by NVFC board member Dick Brown looks at why it is important to recognize when you need help, avenues for support, and his own story of dealing with PTSD.

The Directory of Behavioral Health Professionals – This online, searchable directory contains a listing of local providers who are equipped and ready to help firefighters, EMS providers, rescue workers, dispatchers, and their families.

NVFC First Responder Helpline – NVFC members and their household family have access to this helpline 24/7 for any behavioral health issue or work-life stresses.

Share the Load – Find additional resources, training, and tools to support responder mental and behavioral health.